VLADIMIR Putin has pulled back Russian troops from the Ukraine border despite showcasing the country's military firepower.
It comes as new footage shows Russian forces displaying their combat readiness in various regions across the country.
Defence minister and close ally of Putin Sergei Shoigu ordered ten of thousands of troops back to their bases by May 1.
But at the same time, he ordered their heavy weapons kept in western Russia for another military exercise later this year.
The weapons will be stored at the Pogonovo firing range in the southwestern region of Voronezh - 100 miles east of the border with Ukraine.
Overnight, "frightened" residents in Rostov-on-Don, close to the Ukrainian border, witnessed “spooky lights” later identified as an infrared guidance system on a Russian warplane.
A video shows a 600-strong deployment from the Northern Fleet performing live firing drills in the Astrakhan region with S-300 long range surface-to-air missiles.
Other footage shows Tu-95 strategic missile carriers in the Amur region, artillery fire from warships in the Pacific, and army drills in the Leningrad region.
Moscow also claimed to have turned away in American spy plane from its state border amid high tensions between Russia and the US.
Moment Putin caves to the West and withdraws troops from Ukraine border but shows off firepower in act of defiance
From Brexit breaking news to HD movie trailers, The Sun newspaper brings you the latest news videos and explainers from the UK and around the world.
Become a Sun Subscriber and hit the bell to be the first to know
Read The Sun: www.thesun.co.uk
Like The Sun on Facebook: www.facebook.com/thesun/
Follow The Sun on Twitter: twitter.com/TheSun
Subscribe to The Sun on Snapchat: www.snapchat.com/discover/The_Sun/1633225139